Boise is the capital, largest city, and cultural center of Idaho. Most people move to City of Trees for its charming, small-town friendliness and fast-paced lifestyle.
The clean and attractive downtown is framed by irrigated agricultural plains to the west and mountains to the northeast. The economy is a diverse blend of light manufacturing, agricultural processing, and high-tech industries, including J.R. Simplot, Hewlett-Packard, and Micron Technology.
Choosing the right neighborhood is one of the most important decisions you will have to make. Location affects affordability, value and your quality of life. If you’re thinking of moving to Boise, here are 5 neighborhoods you should check out!
Best Places to Live in Boise, Idaho:
1. North End
The North End is Boise’s historic gem. It’s located north of downtown Boise and is nestled up to the Boise foothills. It features many of the area’s oldest and most historic homes. Most homes in this area were built during the 19th century.
The North End neighborhood is considerably one of Boise’s most desirable neighborhoods. It’s an example of the American inner-ring suburb: proximity to schools, amenities, and pocket parks; expansive, tree-lined streets and; handsome and diverse buildings.
When choosing a neighborhood, it’s important to determine your personal style. In North End, there’s a selection of Spanish, Queen Anne, and other styles.
Some favorite North End pockets:
- The residential block areas between 16th and 27th south of State – This area provides all the benefits of north-end living at a better price.
- The area around 6th & O’Farell – This neighborhood is quiet and offers easy access to the Boise Co-Op. Landmarks include Resseguie and Hollywood Market at 8th.
- The area around 24th & Ridenbaugh – This neighborhood features gorgeous 20th-century homes. Highlights include Irene and Elm Grove Park at 23rd.
2. Boise Bench
Check out the Boise Bench neighborhood if you’re looking for a vibrant, up-and-coming community with a blend of hipster and old-school culture. Boise Bench is generally an older residential neighborhood.
The neighborhood offers some of the best views of Boise. For most locals, Boise Bench is “the next North End.” This is because of the number of affordable homes with such proximity to downtown.
Some favorite Boise Bench pockets:
- The area between Crescent Rim and Latah – This is a pristine area developed in the 50s and 60s.
- The neighborhood north of Emerald between Houston Road and Garden Street – This neighborhood is super quiet and offers absolutely incredible views.
- The neighborhood near Morris Hill Cemetery and the park at Roosevelt & Alpine – This neighborhood offers lovely views of the Boise Foothills and park.
- The area around Glen Haven Street – This neighborhood features custom designed homes built in the 50s and 60s.
From mid-century modern classics to the post-war storybook, there’s a little something for everyone here.
3. Northwest Boise
Northwest Boise lies blanketed against downtown Boise to the east, the City of Eagle Park to the west, and Boise Foothills to the north.
Some favorite Northwest Boise pockets:
- The area around Gary Lane & Hill – Many homes in this neighborhood are smaller and relatively affordable.
- Avimor – This neighborhood offers great mountain views.
- Lakeland Village/Carlton Bay – Popular with retirees, Lakeland Village is a beautiful neighborhood that features new, high-end townhomes.
- Riverside Village – Riverside Village is popular for its natural beauty. But despite being a high-end location, homes are much more affordable relative to other neighborhoods in southeast Boise.
- Jordan’s Landing/John’s Landing/Point Sub/Castle Hills – This is a fantastic area with mature trees, great schools, easy foothills access and a nice neighborhood feel.
- Plantation – Plantation area offers a lush, green, peaceful feeling.
- The Sycamore District – This area has a slightly rural, acreage-in-the-city feel.
4. Southeast Boise
Southeast Boise features attractive and upscale areas. It’s particularly popular for its serenity. Southeast Boise is essentially a residential neighborhood. Residents enjoy proximity to outdoor amenities like the Boise River Greenbelt and several parks.
It is nestled between Micron Technology to the east and Boise State University to the west side. People are drawn to this Boise neighborhood for its biking and hiking and even fishing along the Greenbelt.
Some favorite Southeast Boise pockets:
- Columbia Village – A planned community that includes a recreation center with walking paths, gym, and pool.
- Surprise Valley – This is a great area to live in Boise, with large homes and nice backyards.
- Wood Duck Island – This neighborhood features gracious homes and winding, walk-friendly streets.
- Harris Ranch – This is an incredible area to buy/rent a new home with easy access to downtown Boise.
- River Run – This neighborhood is ideal for those seeking a turn-key lifestyle. It features many patio homes and condos.
- Bown Crossing – This neighborhood is tucked right next to the popular Bown Crossing shopping district.
- East Meadow Park – Developed around a private park, this neighborhood features terrific areas surrounding Liberty Elementary.
- Lakewood – Lakewood offers nice lot sizes, mature trees, community parks and nice lot sizes.
- Old South Boise Village – This neighborhood offers easy access to the airport and homes cost much less.
5. East End
East End is one of the oldest neighborhood in Boise City. Boise Foothills flank it to the north and parts of Boise State University’s campus touch its boundaries to the south.
Some favorite East End pockets:
- Idaho Botanical Garden & The Old Penitentiary Venue – This neighborhood is an interesting and historic area to roam, tour and chill.
- Warms Springs – Houses here are distinctive and grand with diverse architectural styles. The combination of geothermal heat and stately homes make this neighborhood one of Boise’s historically significant local districts.
- Boise Foothills Trails – This neighborhood features an interconnected network of roads and trails.
- Table Rock – This neighborhood offers stunning views. You will especially love it if you like challenging hiking and mountain biking.
An interesting aspect of Warm Springs is that hot springs run underground through much of the area.